Darrell Brown, who broke Arkansas football color barrier, passes away
Former Arkansas football player Darrell Brown passed away Saturday. He was considered a trailblazer, and a groundbreaker when it came to intercollegiate football in the South.
Brown, a former lawyer in Little Rock, was considered to be one of the first black football players in the South.
According to Dan Wentzel’s book on Brown, he faced relentless opposition within the program, “mostly from the coaching staff that knew better than to ban him but did everything they could to run him off.”
Brown was recognized at a Razorbacks game in 2011, and was one of only 12 African-Americans on the campus as a student in the fall of 1965.
He made it through undergraduate study and then law school at Arkansas.
An excerpt from Wentzel’s book:
“He was literally used as a tackling dummy on kickoff drills. No matter what they threw at him, he refused to quit and gutted it out to play on the JV. An injury ended his playing days but not his impact on America. He graduated from UA, then its law school. He became a pioneering attorney in Little Rock, a civil rights leader and a tremendous father and community inspiration across the state. In 2011, Arkansas honored him as a trailblazer at halftime of a Razorbacks game. I was fortunate enough to meet Darrell through my friend Rus Bradburd, the great author. I wrote about Darrell in 2011.”